"We wanted to see a little different competition, and I thought we'd be a little more competitive there," said Cartersville coach David Matherne, whose program is in Class AAA. "Usually, believe it or not, we're more competitive (in Class AAAA)."
"It wasn't a particularly fast day for any of the runners from all the schools ... because it was a little hotter than it's been in the last few Saturdays and it's a hillier course," he continued.
Jared Williams of Southwest DeKalb was the boys' winner with a 17-minute, 13-second race.
Roger Herrera's 25th-place finish in the AAAA boys' division was the best among his teammates. Herrera ran a 19:22.
"Roger Herrera just continues to get better and better," Matherne said of his young runner, who led the Cartersville boys for the second week in a row.
Another runner who also seems to fit that description is Lawson Crowe, who placed three spots behind his Cartersville teammate with a time of 19:39.
"He just keeps on moving up on our team," Matherne said of Crowe. "Lawson was not (on) varsity last year so for him to do what he's doing right now is quite rare. ... He never saw Carrollton (last year). A lot of the girls haven't seen it either."
Zach Cravey (20:12, 41st), Alex Vicente (20:30, 53rd) and Troy Hickom also factored into the Cartersville boys' score, which was 194 points, 165 behind first-place McIntosh (29).
Other runners were Richard Jennings (21:38, 85th), Tommy Morrison (22:00, 96th), Noah Harper (22:01, 97th), Myrick Hunter (22:17, 101st) and Chris Pastor (25:07, 134th). Harper, a freshman, was running in his first race.
"We had some good performances," Matherne said.
On the Cartersville girls' side, Lindsay Anderson, who did not run in the Berry Invitational Sept. 4, followed up a second-place finish at the Pickens Preview Aug. 28 with a 14th-place finish Saturday, which earned her a medal.
Amanda Cope of Winder-Barrow won the girls' race with a 20:39.
Anderson ran a 23:03, while Talitha Cherer had what Matherne called a "breakout race," placing 44th with a time of 25:47.
Kyra Gore (26:37, 49th), Elyse Hoganson (28:49, 67th) and Katie Bateman (29:51, 73rd) completed the girls' scoring. Cartersville's 212 points were 172 points behind winner McIntosh (40).
Other girls' runners for Cartersville included Victoria Hickom (30:28, 77th), Alex Everhart (30:34, 78th) and Kaili Willis (31:25, 84th).
Although Matherne felt his teams could have finished in the top five, he knows the experience of running at Carrollton will benefit them later in the season should they make it to the state meet.
"We need to know that course," he said. "You can't find too many courses that are as hilly."
Cartersville's next race action comes Saturday when it hosts the Cartersville Classic at the Tellus Science Museum.
Seven high school teams will be among the competitors, including local teams such as Cass, Excel Christian and Woodland. A middle school race also is scheduled, with Cartersville Middle a local participant.